for people who love the littlest dairy goats
Hi, I adopted two 9-year old NDG sisters from a rescue group and brought them home last Saturday. I put them straight into the field with my two 4-year old NDGs and of course there have been a lot of "calm discussions" about who gets to be the herd leader.
My question is, how long will it take for them to work everything out? At night, I have to lock them all in the barn, but separate them with a piece of hog panel. If I didn't do that, the two 4-year olds would be left out in the cold because the two new ones won't let them in the door. Other than at night, though, they have been out in the field together "working things out" every day since Saturday. Is there a chance that they will never work it out and the new ones will never let the other ones in the barn?
LOL...LOVE the "children" analogy! :)
Margaret Langley said:
I agree with Rachel! I would work from this angle right now and then use that angle later after they get over their reservations about being hand fed! Just being caught to them is scary! And you want to get passed other fears before you scare them more. They may not consider being brushed a good thing at this point, therefore it would not only not help but could make things worse because to them it would just seem they have been trapped by you for an extended period of time for something they did not enjoy!
Be patient Momma! I promise this will work. We won't know how much progress they will make, but they will make progress if they have to rely on you for that food! And it will be quicker than you think! All of a sudden one day, you will realize that they are driving you nuts getting in your way!
Let me help you relate:
I am going to assume here, that you probably have children or at the very least have been around at least one for a good bit of time or maybe remember being one. You know how you work so hard with them to teach them to say a word, then 2, & 5 and a sentence. Then you are on the phone, or talking to a neighbor, or chatting with Hubby ...OR TRYING TO SLEEP...or whatever... for the rest of your life...THEY WON'T SHUT UP & quit talking! It's kinda like that!
Well, it's not really the same thing, but I did just deal with a dam raised baby who had gone a little wild. We cornered him until caught, petted him and fed him and it did make a big difference. Sometimes making a quick grab in order to break the ice and get over the hump so to speak so that they aren't constantly anticipating that first touch can help.
As far as herd relations, when I introduced my mini mancha to my other girls it was 3 ND versus the 1 mancha who is significantly bigger than them. All have no horns. Anyway, she followed about 100ft behind the others when they would graze/browse, but when it rained, she would hog the shed and run them all out. At long last the 3 littles decided they had had enough and mounted a revolt against her, all three of them walked in a line shoulder to shoulder and marched into that shed like "listen here, lady, we're done getting wet". Pretty hilarious.
Longer they have been together the more they settle down and Once Velvet (the mancha) was in a family way, she suddenly had no ill will towards anyone. Once all the babies were born the shed wars ceased, she would not stoop to running babies out into the rain, and ALL the mommies and ALL the babies crammed in there (don't worry, they come in at night, they only have to pack into the little shed for quick afternoon thundershowers)
And finally, when people tame wild horses they usually put a halter and rope on and leave it on, makes them easier to catch. Mustangs will wear a rope constantly for the first few weeks or months. It is a bit of a safety hazard, but could work
Thanks again, everyone! I made some progress today. Both Gracie and Nina were easily bribed with animal crackers. I made them practically climb in my lap to get a cookie. Then, while they were busy trying to pry the cookie from my hand, I would run a brush through their coat. It would only last for a couple of seconds, but they kept coming back.
That sounds very promising Kathy! Your getting the hang of it now!